Living in Devon definitely has its advantages. When the sun is shining there is nothing better than heading to one of our local beaches, breathing in the fresh salty sea air, getting sticky fingers from ice creams, taking in the beautiful sea views, letting Phoebe run around getting sandy and just being outside, it does wonders for my soul.
We live in Exeter which is about a 35 minute drive on a good day to our nearest beach, Dawlish or a little bit further to Exmouth. A few weeks we decided to try Teingmouth, I was quite excited as I spent a lot of my childhood there, growing up playing on the sand, splashing in the sea or the lido, which is sadly gone now. So, after Phoebe had an early lunch at home, Nanna picked us up and off we went to Teingmouth. It was such a stunning drive through the countryside to the coast, complimented by listening to Ella Fitzgerald. It took slightly longer than expected due to road works, but it didn’t matter as the views made the waiting seem somewhat bearable. Once we arrived we unloaded all the essentials items and off we went, Phoebe wearing her ladybird toddler back pack with Nanna tightly holding the reins. It wasn’t long before Phoebe had us both its fits of laughter, as soon as we reached the grass area and large play park she noticed a little boy about 4, standing leaning on the low railing (with his grandma) and for some reason started running towards him, at full speed and what she did next was either
- A rugby tackle to move him from the railing as she thinks everything is hers “meeeee”
- A random act of kindness…she was very excited
- Maybe she thought she knew him???
- None of the above and she’s just a CRAZY!
After removing her from the lovely little boy, who took it all rather well to be fair we herded her in the direction of the park. This is easier said than done with a inquisitive toddler who wants to touch everything along the way, of course I don’t want to crush her curious adventurous ways, but there is a limit when it’s old, dirty crisp packets or a soggy leaf, which could potentially have been pissed on!
Dodging the ice cream stall/cafe we made it to the park, where both me and Nanna let out a sigh of relief, knowing she couldn’t escape. The park was brilliant, it had something for every age and being so spread out with lots of little areas, made it perfect for the kids to not get in each other way. Phoebe of course wanted to play in the areas that were a bit to old for her, it took some time to coax her off the big girl slide but once we managed it, she found the pirate ship with nice chunky stairs making it easy to climb, a decent sized slide and lots of different levels plus peep holes, she was in her element. After some serious sliding (me and nanna included) we headed for the swings or the “weeeee’sss” as they are now known, Phoebe lasted longer than normal, seemed to enjoy it and she doesn’t seem to be obsessed by the chains anymore (the weirdo used to try and lick them!) and has starting to kick her legs with the motion of the swing!
By 2 years, every mother knows when their child is shitting, my little minx alway decides to go mid park play, it’s likes she gets over excited and all the running around seems to make her need to go. She’s still in nappies so it’s not an issue, just stinky and you suddenly go into mummy mode, popping your head up like a meerkat whilst on tippy toes hoping to get a better view of the nearest cafe/toilet! Stinky bum all dealt with and phoebe all secure in the stroller we all indulged with a Mr.Whippy ice cream. Phoebe was extremely excited and clung onto her ‘lollol’ with a tight two handed, monkey grip, we took this as our perfect opportunity to go for a wonder and see the sea. Phoebe was so engrossed in the ice cream, she hardly made a noise, just the occasional cute “ohhhh” so we where able to enjoy the view with some quiet. It felt like a holiday, strolling along with the sun warming our backs, looking out over at the still blue sea with my family, just gorgeous.
The arcades were always my favourite as a kid and I spent many rainy days playing with my saved up 2ps hoping to win that hideous cuddle toy that I so desperately wanted. So when my mum saw one, she suggested taking Phoebe in and I’m so glad we did! We spend about £3.50 and had around an hours worth of fun, they even had little stools so Phoebe was able to see all the fun happening. I obviously had a little go myself and managed quite a win on a 2p shelf drop which all went back in of course. Nanna also let me have 5 minutes peace, so I popped outside and took in the view.
After the arcades we hit a few charity shops, then headed back to the car. As we approached the grass area Phoebe saw a little friend from earlier and I was praying she didn’t go for him again, luckily she kept her cool and showed me she can be a lady, by blowing him a kiss as he got into his car. I could leave it at that, and pretend what happened next didn’t really happen, however it’s too funny. So, Phoebe couldn’t just leave it by saying bye bye, blowing her new friend a kiss followed by a wave, oh no that would be too straight forward, she tried getting in the car with him…then when she couldn’t, started to bang the door, we had to pull her off, causing her to have a big melt down and tears.
It took Phoebe all off 4 minutes to fall asleep once on the road, the drive back was lovely as the sun was still so high. Overall it was a great afternoon out and Phoebe slept super well that evening and it didn’t take me long either.
What local spots to you enjoy secretly escaping to? When was the last time you just needed to see the sea?